Posted by: jedwardswright | May 11, 2010

Songs About Depression

blue guitar

While there are times when the last thing that you need may be a song that is depressing, it is also true that listening to lyrics that describe the pain well can make us feel understood, and less alone.
Here are some recordings that really spoke to me over the years about the reality of having depression


Walking on Broken Glass
The Eurythmics

 Annie Lennox communicates emotional pain so vividly in this piece that you can almost feel slivers in the arches of your feet. The analogy between physical and emotional hurt is practically perfect.

Boulevard of Broken Dreams
Green Day
Elevates loneliness to an art form. “I walk alone, I walk alone.”  Even the guyliner looks depressed on this one. Brilliantly simple!

Haven’t Got Time For the Pain
Carly Simon
“Suffering was the only thing that made me feel I was alive/Thought that’s just how much it cost to survive in this world.” While Carly’s overall message is positive in this song (not that that is a bad thing!), it is obvious that she knows the despair of day-to-day depression. The lyrics get a bit repetitive, but the emotion is real.

California Dreamin’
The Mamas and the Papas

John Phillips captured the bleakness of enduring winter with SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) and longing for a sunnier place that is familiar to so many of us living in northern climates. When SAD is added on to clinical depression, the brown and gray tones of this tune fit the constant colors in our mind.

Rainy Days and Mondays
The Carpenters

Cheesier than Cheez Whiz, but sticks in your mind like the spread to the bread — somehow this melancholy tribute  about love getting you through life’s drudgery still gets to me — I confess.

 ‘Til I Am Myself Again
Blue Rodeo
From a terrific Canadian pop/country/rock band, this tune captures the sinking, drinking, and stinking thinking of a genuine  depression low. Vocalist Jim Cuddy does a great job of wringing the pain out of the lyrics, but somehow I can’t stop wishing for an Adam Lambert cover of this with record

Unwell   Matchbox 20
Eerily describes the distortions in the thought processes of someone struggling with a chemical imbalance in his brain, these lyrics are so accurate in spots, it almost makes me uncomfortable. If there is ever an “I Have Depression” coming out day (a concept which I totally endorse and have invented), this should be its theme song. “I’m not crazy, I’m just a little unwell” captures the frustration of all of us who are struggling with a mental health condition. Why can’t the rest of the world understand that we have a medical problem?

What do you think?

Share your own favorite songs about depression here.


  1. Many people do not understand also what a depression or a mid life crisis is.. it is that void,, the emptiness you have when you lost somethign that once was important to you.. solution to depressions are good sleep, goog food, having good friends and not rather bad ones.

    Lack of sleep is still a killer.. so is not eating properly.. so is unresolved stress…

  2. It is true — many people do not understand what it is like to have depression.
    Getting enough sleep, eating well, having good friends, and avoiding stress are positive steps for a person who is depressed. For someone who is depressed because of difficult situations in their lives, like the loss of something or someone important to them, good habits like those may be enough to help them cope until the crisis is over.
    For someone with clinical depression, which is a medical condition believed to be caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain, professional help is usually needed to relieve the constant misery that they experience. Medical treatment and/or therapy with a qualified counselor are strongly recommended.
    If you are not sure which kind of depression you have, talk to our doctor about how you are feeling.

  3. Hey incredibly nice blog!! Man .. Attractive .. Amazing .. I’ll bookmark your blog and get the feeds

    • Thank you for the compliments, and glad to have you join us here!

  4. Feburary Song, Josh Groban. Woke me up.

    • Thanks for the suggestion, Kim. Love Josh Groban!

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